Scholarly article on topic 'Energy Efficient Solvents for CO2 Absorption from Flue Gas: Vapor Liquid Equilibrium and Pilot Plant Study'

Energy Efficient Solvents for CO2 Absorption from Flue Gas: Vapor Liquid Equilibrium and Pilot Plant Study Academic research paper on "Chemical sciences"

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{"Vapour Liquid Equilibrium" / VLE / "Pilot Plant" / "CO2 " / "Energy efficiency" / "Solvent Development" / Amine / Absorption}

Abstract of research paper on Chemical sciences, author of scientific article — Prachi Singh, W.P.M. Van Swaaij, D.W.F. (Wim) Brilman

Abstract From solvent screening for new, amine based solvents for CO2 recovery from flue gas, two most promising solvent formulations, a 51 wt% New Solvent (NS) and a 26.7% AMP-11.9% HMDA mixture were selected and tested in an industrial pilot plant, mainly to identify the regeneration energy requirement. In the pilot plant tests CO2 absorption was done at 40°C, 1.3bar and regeneration at 120°C, 2.0-2.2bar, using both 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration. At 90% CO2 recovery and optimized solvent circulation, the NS solvent was the most energy efficient, requiring only 2.48 and 2.26MJ/kg CO2 for 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration respectively, whereas the AMP-HMDA solvent required 3.62 and 3.41MJ/kg CO2. Both solvents compare favorably to the 30wt% MEA reference measurements in the same pilot plant (4.80 resp. 4.33MJ/kg CO2) showing the potential of these energy-efficient solvents.

Academic research paper on topic "Energy Efficient Solvents for CO2 Absorption from Flue Gas: Vapor Liquid Equilibrium and Pilot Plant Study"

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Energy Procedía 37 (2013) 2021 - 2046

GHGT-11

Energy Efficient Solvents for CO2 Absorption from Flue Gas: Vapor Liquid Equilibrium and Pilot Plant Study

Prachi Singha*, W. P. M. Van Swaaijb, D.W.F. (Wim) Brilmanb

aIEAGHG, The Orchard Business Centre, Stoke Orchard, Cheltenham, GLOS UK, GL52 7RZ, UK _bFaculty of Science and Technology, University of Twente, PO Box 217, 7500 AE, Enschede, The Netherlands_

Abstract

From solvent screening for new, amine based solvents for CO2 recovery from flue gas, two most promising solvent formulations, a 51 wt% New Solvent (NS) and a 26.7% AMP-11.9% HMDA mixture were selected and tested in an industrial pilot plant, mainly to identify the regeneration energy requirement. In the pilot plant tests CO2 absorption was done at 40°C, 1.3 bar and regeneration at 120°C, 2.0-2.2 bar, using both 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration. At 90% CO2 recovery and optimized solvent circulation, the NS solvent was the most energy efficient, requiring only 2.48 and 2.26 MJ/kg CO2 for 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration respectively, whereas the AMP-HMDA solvent required 3.62 and 3.41 MJ/kg CO2. Both solvents compare favorably to the 30wt% MEA reference measurements in the same pilot plant (4.80 resp. 4.33 MJ/kg CO2) showing the potential of these energy-efficient solvents.

© 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of GHGT

Keywords: Vapour Liquid Equilibrium; VLE; Pilot Plant; CO2; Energy efficiency; Solvent Development; Amine; Absorption

1. Introduction

Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming and climate change. Post combustion capture of carbon dioxide (CO2) is undoubtedly the most versatile technology for mitigating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired electric power plants. It is also one of the technologies that can supply huge amounts of CO2 to be used as flooding agent in enhanced oil recovery. Considering the cost and performance of post combustion capture technology for coal and natural gas power plants is still high around 58 and 80 USD/tonneCO2 avoided respectively [1]. Figure 1, shows a comparison of different CO2 capture technologies like post combustion capture, oxy combustion capture and pre combustion capture on the basis of cost per tonne CO2 avoided at 89% CO2 capture rate. The power plant net efficiency is reduced by around 25 and 15% for coal and natural gas power plant respectively [1]. The operational cost based on overall CO2 avoided cost contributes approximately 76% see Figure 2. In this figure 50% of operation cost comes from fuel consumption from post combustion

Corresponding author, E-mail address: prachi.singh@ieaghg.org.

1876-6102 © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of GHGT doi: 10.1016/j.egypro.2013.06.082

capture unit [2]. Fuel requirement is mainly from the heat required for solvent regeneration which is accounted for around 55-70% [3]. The rest of the fuel is required for CO2 compression and solvent circulation pumps.

Figure 2, Cost of CO2 ($/tonne CO2 avoided) for

, „„ ., , ^ _ „ „„ post combustion capture unit, ME A solvent for

Figure 1, CO2 avoided cost from different CO2 ^ , , , , ,

/ , 2 2 400MWe Coal fired power plant at 90% CO2

capture technology, IEA 2011. r r ±

capture rate, Singh et al. 2003.

In order to make post combustion capture technology competitive, it is important to reduce the effect of post combustion capture technology on the power plant efficiency and CO2 avoided cost. One of the most attractive methods to remove CO2 from diluted, low-pressure gas streams is by absorption with chemical reaction using aqueous alkanolamine solutions. The reference solvent for this type of process is a 30 wt.% aqueous solution of Monoethanolamine (MEA) which, however, has the drawback of a high energy requirement for solvent regeneration, leading to an efficiency penalty up to 15 percentage points or more in the efficiency of fossil fuelled power plants.

The stripping of CO2 from MEA or DEA solutions requires significant more energy as compared to MDEA solution. The heat duty for solvent regeneration can constitute up to 40% of the total operating costs in a CO2 capture plant [3], including solvent heating up, water evaporation and CO2 release, which on their turn are determined by cyclic loading capacity and carbamate (or bicarbonate) stability. Other operating costs concerns are solvent corrosiveness and solvent chemical instability, which are suggested by literature studies. For better process economics it is essential to find more efficient solvents, tailored for CO2 post combustion capture.

A wide variety of solvents types like alkanolamines, amino acid and cyclic amines exists for CO2 absorption process e.g. Monoethanolamine (MEA) including Diethanolamine (DEA), Di-2-

propanolamine (DIPA), Methyldiethanolamine (MDEA), 2-amino-2-methyl-1-propanol (AMP) and Piperazine (Pz). Some of these amine based solvents are already applied in industry for many years. These solvents show clear differences in their performance during CO2 absorption when using e.g. packed columns for contacting the flue gas with the absorption liquid. Figure 3, shows the survey of reported energy requirement for post combustion capture process from different solvents [4-19]. It should be noticed that these presented values are dependent on the specific plant design and operating conditions. Therefore, these values only give an orientation and should not be compared directly.

2 1-50 H

B 1-00

J 0.50 -

^ ^ # jS

^ <v W

Figure 3, Energy consumption in the stripper from different literature sources [4-19]. The reported numbers only give an orientation and should not be compared directly.

Mixed amines like AMP + Pz, DMMEA + MAPA or Sarcosine + Amine shown in Figure 3, are also of an interest as these have been reported to maximize the desirable qualities of the individual amines. Thus, the specific goal with respect to the use of mixed amines is to have a solution consisting of tertiary and primary amines or tertiary plus secondary amines that, in comparison with single amine based systems, retains much of the reactivity of primary or secondary amines at similar or reduced solvent circulation rates and offers low regeneration costs similar to those of tertiary amines, due to enhanced bicarbonate formation and a higher CO2 cyclic capacity. Consequently, by blending a primary or secondary alkanolamine with a tertiary alkanolamine, bulk CO2 removal is easily accomplished while regeneration energy costs are minimized. In addition, another degree of freedom (the amine concentration) is gained. The amine concentration can be altered to achieve precisely the desired separation for a given process configuration. Substantial reductions in energy requirements and modest reduction in solvent circulation rates have been reported for amine blends relative to the corresponding single amine system of similar total amine concentration [20].

1.1. Solvent Development

In order to develop new, energy efficient solvents for CO2 absorption process, [21-25] performed solvent screening experiments for various amine based solvents for CO2 absorption and regeneration. From this solvent screening, Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA) and New solvent showed a high CO2 absorption capacity, when compared to MEA and other solvents, in combination with a high initial absorption rate and good regeneration characteristics during screening.

4 -3 -

2 -1 -

0 -■

8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5 11 11.5 12 pKa

Figure 4, Bronsted plot for primary and secondary amine based solvents at 303K *pKa value is at 293K estimated by ACD/pKa software [26].

Therefore, CO2 absorption kinetics experiments were performed by [26] to evaluate HMDA CO2 absorption kinetics. The second order reaction rate constant (k2) for 1 mole/L HMDA was found to be 4.2E+4 L mole-1 s-1 at 303K. This second order CO2 absorption rate constant is high, when compared to that of 1 mole/L MEA of 6.3E+3 L mole-1 s-1. The Bronsted plot shown below in Figure 4, shows the comparison of different solvents second order rate kinetics (k2) based on their basicity. In Figure 4, the linear correlation between the logarithm of k2 (L mole-1 s-1) and pKa for temperatures up to 303K for primary and secondary aqueous alkanolamine, as proposed by [27] (Eq.28) is presented as a straight line.

1.2. Corrosion Test

Before applying a new solvent on a pilot plant scale and an addition to CO2 capture/regeneration characteristics in terms of capacity and kinetics, the corrosiveness of the solvent needs to be evaluated. Therefore, an intrinsic corrosion test was performed for both the HMDA solvent and New Solvent. This test is essentially an iron solubility test, performed at 130°C for 2 hours of contact time. The results from this iron solubility test for Hexamethylenediamine, the New Solvent and MEA (for reference) are presented below in Table 1.

x HMDA N,N'*

HMDA ■

Table 1. Iron solubility test for MEA, Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA) and New Solvent.

Solvent

MEA HMDA New Solvent

Iron solubility

15.0 3.5 2.5

Based on the pre-test solvent screening experiments and the corrosion test results, an aqueous solution of 26.7 wt% AMP + 11.9 wt% HMDA and an aqueous solution of the 51 wt% New Solvent were found to be suitable for pilot plant testing.

Short-cut approach; New Solvent t M

Solvent Screening

Pilot Plant Test

• Regeneration energy requirement Solvent circulation rate

Development of

Energy Efficient Solvent

Detailed approach; HMDA

Figure 5, Energy efficient solvent development approach.

For further evaluation of the applicability of these selected amines in post combustion CO2 capture solvent systems more detailed vapour liquid equilibrium tests and pilot plant testing were considered a valuable and necessary next step. The thermodynamic equilibrium data (VLE) for the carbon dioxide solubility determine the most important process parameters in an absorption-desorption cyclic process, like the solvent flow rate and energy requirement for regeneration. Obviously, these two numbers play an important role in process economics and data for this thermodynamic equilibrium is therefore crucial. In this work vapour liquid equilibrium (VLE) data have been determined experimentally for 1,6 Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA) and its AMP blend (AMP+HMDA).

Another main objective of this study is to carry out pilot plant tests to provide proof-of-principle runs for the new solvents, including a first round optimization on solvent circulation rate, the evaluation of the energy requirements for solvent regeneration and, simultaneously, a check on possible operational hurdles. For this purpose and with the permission and support of the technical staff of Shell Technology Centre Amsterdam, pilot plant experiments were performed with the absorption/desorption pilot plant unit

(ASAP). As mentioned above, the solvent (mixtures) selected were based on the results obtained during the experimental solvent screening activities [25] and subsequently formulated into a blend of amines. Two different approaches have been taken in order to develop energy efficient solvents, as shown in Figure 5.

In this study, the New Solvent was investigated via the short approach where after solvent screening results New Solvent was investigated directly by pilot plant tests. For HMDA, on the other hand, first more detailed data for e.g. kinetics and VLE (which is part of this study) was produced, before going for pilot plant tests.

2. Vapor Liquid Equilibrium (VLE)

2.1. Experimental

Vapor liquid equilibrium study was performed by doing experiments for Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA) and its mixture with 2-Amino-2-Methyl 1-propanol (AMP) + Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA). VLE experiment test were also performed for Monoethanolamine (MEA) for experiment set-up validation purpose. All chemicals have been purchased from Sigma Aldrich with a purity of 99%. These solvents were diluted with demineralized water to the desired concentrations.

Figure 6, Schematic diagram of solubility experiment set-up.

Experimental data for the CO2 solubility at various CO2 partial pressures was obtained using a stirred cell reactor setup, which mainly consisted of a thermostatic vigorously stirred reactor (ca. 2L) connected to a calibrated gas vessel (see Figure 6). Both reactor- and gas supply vessel were equipped with a temperature and pressure indicator. In a typical experiment, a known amount of amine solution was transferred to the reactor vessel, after which the liquid was degassed by applying vacuum for a short while to remove all inert gases from the setup and dissolved gases from the amine solutions prior to the experiment. Next, the solution was allowed to equilibrate at the desired temperature and the (vapor) pressure was recorded. Then, the gas supply vessel was filled with pure carbon dioxide and the initial pressure in this vessel was measured. Next, the stirrer was switched on and a sufficient amount of CO2 was fed from the gas supply vessel to the reactor. The gas supply to the reactor was closed and the content

of the reactor was allowed to reach equilibrium - which was reached when the reactor pressure remained constant. The actual CO2 partial pressure could be calculated from this final (equilibrium) reactor pressure corrected for the vapor pressure of the lean solution, thereby assuming that the solution vapor pressure is not influenced by the CO2 loading.

^ 18.0 «

S 16.0

Ï 14.0

I 12.0 à 10.0 •2 8.0 6.0 4.0 2.0 0.0

0.0 0.1

-Tae 0.3

O MEA, This work -MEA, VLE model

X Jou, 1995 A Lee, 1976

0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 Loading (mole CO2 /mole amine)

0.9 1.0

Figure 7, Comparison of the CO2 solubility validation experiment for 2.5 mole/L aqueous solution of MEA at 25 °C with literature [28 & 29] and model data.

The difference between initial and final pressure in the gas supply vessel, taking non-ideal behavior for CO2 in the gas phase into account, was used to calculate the corresponding CO2 loading of the solution. These solubility experiments have been carried out for HMDA concentrations of 0.5, 1 and 2.5 mole/L at 20, 30 and 40°C and mixture of 1.5mole/L AMP + 0.5mole/L HMDA and 3mole/L AMP + 1 mole/L HMDA at 40°C.

In order to determine the accuracy of the VLE experiment set-up, an experiment for the CO2 solubility in a 2.5 molar aqueous solution of Monoethanolamine (MEA) at 25°C was performed. Figure 7, shows experimental data together with literature data reported by [28 & 29]. The data is quite in line with literature data. The model line from the concentration based equilibrium model for MEA model was calculated using the reaction equilibria reported in the VLE model by [30], for which an absolute standard deviation of about 12.5% is reported, still less than the typical uncertainty of VLE data (around 20%), according to [30]. The reproducibility between various experiments was within ±5%. The experimental error in the data points presented in this work is estimated at maximally 0.01 unit (in loading) and 5 mbar (in CO2 partial pressure) respectively. Equilibrium partial pressures below 1 kPa of CO2 were considered to be unreliable for this measurement technique and are not reported here.

2.2. VLE Results and Discussion

Table 2, Experimental VLE data of CO2 in a 0.5 mole/L aqueous solution of HMDA.

T = 20oC

T = 30oC

T = 40oC

Loading mole CO2 /mole amine PCO2 kPa Loading mole CO2 /mole amine PCO2 kPa Loading mole CO2 /mole amine PCO2 kPa

1.29 2.64 1.22 2.50 1.21 2.16

1.37 3.82 1.31 3.61 1.29 3.79

1.46 5.77 1.38 5.67 1.36 5.95

1.54 8.85 1.46 8.36 1.43 9.10

1.62 13.72 1.53 12.64 1.50 13.88

1.69 20.98 1.59 18.18 1.56 20.16

1.75 32.16 1.65 26.06 1.62 28.10

1.80 46.77 1.70 35.95 1.66 37.13

1.74 46.66 1.70 47.49

1.77 59.45 1.74 58.44

1.79 70.99 1.76 71.65

1.81 80.50

Table 3, Experimental VLE data of CO2 in a 1 mole/L aqueous solution of HMDA.

T = 20oC Loading PCO2

mole CO2 /mole amine

T = 30oC Loading PCO2

mole CO2 /mole amine

T = 40oC Loading PCO2

mole CO2 /mole amine

1.07 1.19 1.15

1.20 2.91 1.19

1.24 3.86 1.23

1.28 5.11 1.27

1.33 6.65 1.30

1.37 8.53 1.34

1.41 10.92 1.38

1.45 13.69 1.42

1.48 17.04 1.45

1.52 20.67 1.48

1.55 25.00 1.52

1.58 30.12 1.54

1.60 35.38 1.57

1.63 41.81 1.59

1.65 48.48 1.62

1.67 55.27

1.69 62.57

1.88 1.02 1.47

2.82 1.05 1.98

3.98 1.09 2.77

5.45 1.13 3.85

7.07 1.17 4.98

9.27 1.21 6.85

11.85 1.24 9.13

14.95 1.28 11.60

18.52 1.31 14.64

22.78 1.35 18.00

27.40 1.38 21.79

32.57 1.40 25.94

38.45 1.43 30.66

42.04 1.46 35.41

50.29 1.48 40.89

All experimentally obtained data on CO2 solubility in aqueous solution of 0.5, 1 and 2.5 mole/L of 1,6 Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA) at 20, 30 and 40°C with corresponding partial pressures are listed in Tables 2 to 4. To determine the effect of temperature at fixed concentrations of HMDA on the solubility of CO2, the partial pressures of CO2 (PCO2) (kPa) were plotted by the equilibrium loading (mole CO2/mole amine). These results are summarized in Figure 8 to 11.

Table 4, Experimental VLE data of CO2 in a 2.5 mole/L aqueous solution of HMDA.

T = 20oC Loading PCO2

mole CO2 /mole amine

T = 30oC Loading PCO2

mole CO2 /mole amine

T = 40oC Loading PCO2

mole CO2 /mole amine

1.05 1.81 1.04 1.86 1.01 1.87

1.07 2.23 1.06 2.40 1.02 2.43

1.09 2.69 1.07 3.03 1.04 3.33

1.10 3.30

1.09 3.77

1.12 3.98 1.05 4.36

1.11 4.65

1.14 4.74 1.12 5.63 1.07 5.53

1.15 5.58 1.14 6.72 1.08 6.95

1.17 6.53 1.15 7.95 1.10 8.46

1.19 7.55 1.17 9.35 1.11 10.02

1.20 8.66 1.18 10.92 1.13 11.87

1.22 9.97 1.20 12.52 1.14 13.66

1.24 11.31 1.21 14.24 1.16 15.84

1.25 12.61 1.23 16.09 1.17 17.98

1.27 14.19 1.24 18.09 1.18 20.43

1.28 15.84 1.25 20.30 1.19 22.92

1.29 17.52 1.27 22.47 1.21 25.75

1.31 19.38 1.28 24.89 1.22 28.32

1.32 21.28 1.29 26.93 1.23 30.97

1.33 23.37 1.30 29.39 1.24 33.73

1.35 25.59 1.31 31.93 1.25 36.46

1.36 27.88 1.32 34.45 1.26 39.28

1.37 1.38 30.18 32.72 1.33 1.34 36.98 39.46 1.27 42.23

1.40 35.43 1.35 42.01 1.28 45.04

1.41 38.12 1.36 44.72 1.28 48.08

1.42 40.79 1.37 47.46 1.29 50.99

1.43 43.47 1.30 53.91

1.44 45.87 1.31 56.21

The effect of HMDA concentration on its CO2 absorption capacity is shown in Figure 11, where absorption equilibrium of CO2 in three different concentrations of HMDA is presented. The observed concentration dependency, the CO2 equilibrium loading per amine group decreases with an increase in HMDA concentration at fixed temperature and -CO2 partial pressure, is similar to what is normally found for aqueous MEA-solutions. Realizing that HMDA contains two primary amine groups, a comparison on a per-amine-group basis seemed relevant. The concentration effect for MEA and HMDA at a temperature of 40°C and similar amine group concentrations is compared in Figure12.

♦ 20 °C ■ 30 °C A 40 °C

♦ 20 °C ■ 30°C A 40 °C

♦ ♦ %

0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 Loading (mole CO2/mole amine)

0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 Loading (mole CO2/mole amine)

Figure 8, Equilibrium solubility of CO2 moles/L aqueous solution of HMDA.

in a 0.5 Figure 9, Equilibrium solubility of CO2 in a 1 moles/L aqueous solution of HMDA.

♦ 20 °C ■ 30°C A 40°C

« 20 №

X 0.5 mole/L O 1 mole/L + 2.5 mole/L

«20 №

0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 Loading (mole CO2/mole amine)

Figure 10, Equilibrium solubility of CO2 in a 2.5 moles/L aqueous solution of HMDA.

0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 Loading (mole CO2/mole amine)

Figure 11, Equilibrium solubility of CO2 at 40°C in an aqueous solution of HMDA.

It can be observed in Figure 12 that at similar amine group molar concentrations and at the same partial pressure, that the CO2 solubility in HMDA solutions is significantly higher. This effect is stronger at higher loadings (higher CO2 partial pressures). Alternatively, for a given amine loading, the equilibrium partial pressure of CO2 for HMDA is a factor 3-8 lower than for MEA. Again, this effect

changes somewhat with loading and (not shown here) with temperature. The similarity of the curves is illustrated by Figure 12.

Figure 12, Similarity of CO2 partial pressure-loading curve for 5 mole/L MEA with 2.5 mole/L HMDA at 40°C. Solid model line represents 25% of the CO2-equilibrium pressure for 5mole/L MEA.

Considering its fast kinetics and high capacity, HMDA was considered to be a potential replacement for piperazine as an 'activator' or 'absorption rate enhancing compound'. From the VLE curve presented in Figure 13, it can be seen that HMDA exhibits a favorable, less steep increase in CO2 partial pressure (PCO2) with increasing CO2 loading and a higher CO2 capacity per mole of amine (and per N atom).

CO2 Loading (mole CO2/mole N atoms)

Figure 13, CO2 partial pressure-loading curve for 0.5 and 1 mole/L HMDA compared with 0.6 mole/L Piperazine (Pz) at 40°C.

CO2 Loading (mole CO2/mole amine)

A 1.5 AMP+0.5HMDA, 40C, This Work ▲ 3 AMP+1 HMDA, 40C, This work

♦ 1 HMDA, 40C, This work -3 AMP+1.5 Pz, 40C, Peter Bru' der 2011 □3 AMP+1 Pz, 40C, Zih-Yi Yang 2010 X3 AMP+0.5 Pz, 40C, Zih-Yi Yang 2010

♦ 0.6 Pz, Zih-Yi 2010 X3 AMP, 40C, Zih-Yi Yang 2010

♦ 3 AMP, 40C, B.E. Roberts 1988

Figure 14, VLE curves for 1.5 mole/L AMP + 0.5 mole/L HMDA, 3 mole/L AMP + 1 mole/L HMDA by experiments and from literature data for AMP, Pz and their blend AMP+PZ at 40°C [31-33].

Regarding to the solvent development for CO2 absorption, a combination of secondary amine and sterically hindered amine can be expected to have a high cyclic capacity combined with fast kinetics and possibility low heat requirement for regeneration. A good example is 'activated' AMP by Piperazine (Pz) addition. Therefore, a further evaluation was performed in this study to investigate the potential of HMDA as an activator in combination with the sterically hindered amine AMP. In Figure 14, a collection of literature data [31-33] for the single solvents AMP, Pz and blends AMP+Pz, together with experimental data for 1.5 mole/L AMP+0.5 mole/L HMDA and 3mole/L AMP + 1.5HMDA is presented.

It can be noticed from above Figure 14, that the AMP + Pz blends, slope is indeed higher than that for single solvent AMP (and is more similar to that of Pz single solvent VLE slope). The VLE data from this work for both AMP+HMDA blends shows that the slope of the CO2 partial pressure vs. CO2 loading is less steep. Similarities in the performance between Pz and HMDA can be noticed and further test of the

AMP+HMDA blends to evaluate possible operational issues and to determine the regeneration energy requirement in the pilot plant is the next step.

3. Pilot Plant Test

The pilot plant test was performed in the bench scale unit called ASAP unit (shortened for Amine Screening Apparatus) located at Shell Technology Centre, Amsterdam. The solvents tested in this plant were Monoethanolamine (MEA), 2-Amino-2-Methyl 1-propanol (AMP), Piperazine (Pz), Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA) and New Solvent. These solvents were purchased from Sigma Aldrich with a purity of 99%. These solvents were diluted with dematerialized water to the desired concentrations.

3.1. Solvent Formulation

In order to determine the optimal solvent formulation for pilot plant test, a pre-test to screen various solvent combinations was performed in a solvent screening unit as presented in Singh et al. 2010. Main focus of these pre-test solvent screening experiments was to identify the suitable solvent formulation on the basis of solvent maximum concentration, rich CO2 loading, lean CO2 loading and cyclic CO2 loading. Other solvent issue like e.g. foaming tendency, crystallization, viscosity changes etc. could also be identified from these experiments.

Table 5, Solvent pre-test screening results from solvent screening experiments at 20 vol% CO2 inlet Concentration.

No. Amine concentration

mole /L

mole /L

Rich Lean Cyclic

loading loading loading

mole CO2 mole CO2 mole CO2 /mole amine /mole amine /mole amine

Abs. slope

• -i min

AMP HMDA

1 3.0 26.7 1.0 11.6 0.94 0.16 0.78 3.39E-03

2 2.5 22.3 1.5 17.9 0.98 - - 4.31E-03

3 2.5 22.3 2.5 29.8 0.94 0.31 0.63 2.69E-03

New Solvent

1 3.0 51.1 - - 1.58 0.17 1.41 3.21E-03

In these solvent pre-test solvent screening experiments, CO2 absorption was done at 20°C and atmospheric pressure with 20 vol% CO2 inlet feed concentration. Regeneration of the solvent tested was carried out at 90°C and atmospheric pressure. AMP solution has been introduced as a commercially attractive co-solvent for HMDA, since it has a loading capacity of up to 1 mole of CO2 per mole of AMP. It showed an excellent absorption characteristic and is easy to regenerate, higher degradation resistance and a lower corrosion rate in comparison with more conventional amines as MEA and MDEA [30]. Hence AMP was chosen in the present investigation as a base solvent in combination with HMDA for solvent formulation in the pre-tests. Additionally, and based on the results obtained during earlier solvent screening activities (Singh et al., 2010), selected amines were formulated into a propriety blend of amines (called 'New Solvent') which exact composition cannot be disclosed here.

Table 5 shows the results from different AMP+HMDA combinations and the New Solvent combination used during pre-test experiments. The importance of pretesting is illustrated by the reported results for AMP 2.5 mole/L + HMDA 1.50 mole/L, where a reliable regeneration experiment could not be obtained due to the high foam formation during experiment. Furthermore, it can be noticed that solvent formulation Nr. 1 has a higher cyclic capacity when compared to that of solvent No.3, see Table 5.

3.2. Shell Pilot Plant ASAP Unit (ID4001)

The ASAP unit (shortened for Amine Screening Apparatus) is a bench scale unit that is capable to test different amine solutions to sweeten several kinds of sour gases under various conditions. The ASAP unit consists of two columns; the Absorber (C200) and the Regenerator (C300) (see Figure 15). The length of absorber and regenerator is 150 cm and the internal diameter is 28 mm.

Figure 15, Simplified process flow scheme of pilot plant unit ASAP.

These columns are packed with structured packing type ex. laboratory packing (Sulzer Chemtech Ltd.). This packing has a surface area of 1735 m2/m3. This high surface area ensures good contacting between gas and liquid. The diameter of this packing element is 28 mm, which is same as internal diameter of the columns. The absorber column is filled up to 145 cm with this packing. The regenerator is

filled up to 130 cm with this packing. The columns are insulated so that exothermic and endothermic heat effects can be monitored.

Sour feed gas of a certain composition is fed into the bottom of the absorber. In the absorber, feed gas will be brought into contact in counter current direction with the amine solvent, which is circulating continually through the absorber-regenerator system. The sour components in the feed gas dissolve in the amine solution by an exothermic reaction. The sweetened off gas is cooled in condenser (E200) to remove vaporized water from the off gas stream. The amine solvent which is loaded in the absorber with sour components from the feed gas stream must be regenerated by stripping before it can be used again in the absorber. In the regenerator (C300) the loaded amine solvent was stripped from its sour components by means of steam generated from the boiling amine solution in the reboiler (E310) of the regenerator.

Loaded or rich solvent is warmed up to 100°C and fed in the top of the Regenerator. In the bottom of the regenerator the amine solvent is boiling at approximately at 124°C and at 2 bar. During the trip down of the loaded solvent, the sour components will come out of the solvent and the solvent become unloaded or lean again. The sour off gas will be cooled in condenser (E300) to remove vaporized water. There is a possibility to improve the stripping by adding nitrogen strip gas in the boiling solvent at the bottom of the regenerator. Liquid samples were taken at every experiment from absorber and regenerator to determine CO2 rich and lean loading by doing separate gas chromatography analysis. The concentrations of components in the feed- and off-gasses are continuously monitored using a Varian CP-4900 micro gas chromatographic (GC). Honeywell process control software is used to run the ASAP unit unmanned and continuously. The process data were stored in the computer.

3.3. Pilot Plant Experimental Procedure

In a typical experiment the inlet gas flow rate, temperature and pressure is already fixed. The absorber and regenerator pressure and temperature are also fixed. In this study absorption was done at 40°C, 1.3bar and regeneration at 120°C, 2.0-2.2bar. The temperature of lean and rich solvent is known and kept constant (at respectively 40 and 100°C). To find the optimum solvent flow rate first the over stripping (higher then optimal reboiler duty (E310)) conditions were applied and CO2 recovery from top of absorber is monitored. Once the CO2 recovery reached 100%, the solvent flow rate is lowered in order to achieve CO2 recovery at top of the absorber of 99% to 97%. Typically, the minimization of solvent flow rate should maximize CO2 loading (mole CO2/kg solvent) and reduce desorption energy requirements per amount of CO2 captured. Once the solvent flow rate is obtained the energy requirement is further minimized by reducing the energy input until 90% CO2 is recovered. Subsequently the solvent flow rate is adjusted again by increasing or decreasing with maximally some 10%-15%. This solvent flow rate optimization helps to identify if further improvement in CO2 recovery can be achieved at the lowest energy requirement. In the situation that CO2 recovery increases with an increase in solvent flow rate it is then desired to reduce energy requirement until 90% CO2 recovery is obtained.

3.4. Pilot Plant Results

In this study, some of the main parameters affecting the capture process were pre-determined by extensive validation of the experiments (not reported here) in this pilot plant and prior to this study. These parameters were adopted from existing operating procedures and are reported in Table 6.

Table 6, Process parameters which were kept constant in the pilot plant tests.

Parameter Experiment Value

CO2 at Inlet (vol%) 5 and 10

Flue gas flow rate (nL/h) 645 (5% CO2 inlet Conc.) and 400 (10% CO2 inlet Conc.)

Flue gas inlet temp.(°C) 37±1

Stripper pressure (bara) 2.00

Solvent concentration (wt%) 38.65 (AMP+HMDA) and 51 (New Solvent)

Lean solvent temerature (°C) 40±1

In this study as explained earlier, some of the main parameters affecting the capture process will be varied as an initial step towards an optimization of the process. Starting from the baseline conditions the following process parameters were varied:

• The solvent circulation rate (kg/h).

• Reboiler duty (Watt).

The energy requirement in the stripper (MJ/kg CO2 removed) was used as an indicator when investigating the effect of the above parameters. The energy requirement was calculated from the heat required in the reboiler, mass rate of CO2 regenerated and the system heat loss. The energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2 removed) was chosen as the main parameter to evaluate different solvent performance in this pilot plant tests, as it is an indicative for operating costs.

Experiments were performed in the ASAP unit for aqueous solution of 26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA and the New Solvent-blend at 51 wt% concentration. Two different combinations of CO2 inlet concentrations and inlet gas flow rate in the feed gas were chosen, a feed gas flow rate of 630 Nm3/h at 5 vol% CO2 and 400 Nm3/h at 10 vol% CO2.

Table 7, Summary of pilot plant tests for the 26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA solvent; main input and results.

Parameter

CO2 at Inlet (vol%) 5.01 5.01 5.01 10.02 10.03 10.03 10.03

Solvent flow rate (kg/h) 0.60 0.60 0.63 0.70 0.73 0.73 0.73

£ Flue gas (nL/h) 644.46 644.74 644.68 399.66 399.69 399.74 399.56

Flue gas inlet temp.(°C) 36.66 36.68 36.63 36.98 37.22 37.06 37.16

Stripper pressure (bara) 2.11 2.16 2.10 2.11 2.21 2.20 2.22

CO2 at outlet regenerator (nL/h) 29.42 29.45 27.55 36.31 34.93 33.96 31.54

CO2 capture (mole CO2/kg amine) 2.19 2.19 1.94 2.32 2.14 2.08 1.93

CO2 recovery from absorber (%) 99.71 99.63 90.80 99.87 99.17 88.02 87.48

Solvent concentration (wt%) 38.65 38.65 38.65 38.65 38.65 38.65 38.65

Rich loading (mole CO2/mole amine) 0.48 0.51 0.47 0.48 0.49 0.50 0.51

'X. Lean loading (mole CO2/mole amine) 0.05 0.07 0.14 0.05 0.06 0.16 0.16

<u Cyclic loading (mole CO2/mole amine) 0.43 0.44 0.33 0.42 0.43 0.33 0.34

Rebolier duty (Watt) 87.84 71.37 76.86 87.84 76.86 79.61 81.25

Energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2) 5.44 4.07 3.62 4.41 3.43 3.08 3.41

Flue gas outlet temperature (°C) 63.50 48.24 47.01 54.97 49.68 47.12 47.22

Lean solvent temerature (°C) 40.57 40.66 40.79 40.92 41.08 41.02 40.95

Reboiler temperature (°C) 122.94 123.60 121.63 122.81 123.35 121.46 122.02

Table 8, Summary of pilot plant tests for the 51 wt% New Solvent; main input and results.

Parameter

CO2 at Inlet (vol%) 5 5 5 5 5 10 10 10 10

Solvent flow rate (kg/h) 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.48 0.50 0.55 0.55 0.57

ft a Flue gas (nL/h) 644 645 644 645 645 400 400 400 400 Pr

Flue gas inlet temp.(°C) 37 37 37 37 37 37 37 37 37 a i Si ngh e

Stripper pressure (bara) 2.06 2.07 2.07 2.07 2.06 2.05 2.06 2.08 2.13

CO2 at outlet regenerator (nL/h) 30.28 30.17 29.00 29.01 27.96 37.78 36.23 35.58 33.02

CO2 capture (mole CO2/kg amine) 2.70 2.69 2.60 2.58 2.60 3.38 2.95 2.87 2.59 l /

CO2 recovery from absorber (%) 100 100 99 98 93 100 100 98 89 En

Solvent concentration (wt%) 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 r gy

w Rich loading (mole CO2/mole amine) 0.84 0.82 0.82 0.89 0.91 0.93 0.90 0.97 0.95 Pr o

13 m Lean loading (mole CO2/mole amine) 0.04 0.06 0.10 0.15 0.22 0.01 0.05 0.15 0.20 di a

<U Cyclic loading (mole CO2/mole amine) 0.80 0.76 0.72 0.74 0.69 0.92 0.84 0.81 0.75 3

Reboiler duty (watt) 82.35 76.86 71.37 65.88 60.39 109.80 82.35 68.63 60.39 2 1

Energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2) 3.62 3.30 3.09 2.74 2.48 4.24 3.03 2.38 2.26 2 02

Flue gas outlet temerature (°C) 47 48 45 46 45 75 49 47 46

Lean solvent temerature (°C) 40 40 40 40 40 40 40 40 40 -2 04

Reboiler temperature (°C) 121 121 120 119 117 122 121 119 117

Table 7 and 8 shows the experimental input and results from each test. It should be noticed that the approximate minimum solvent flow rate (kg/h) was already determined for each solvent before starting the experiments (see experiment procedure). Hence, the solvent flow rate (kg/h) is not varied much during the experiments.

3.5. CO2 Recovery and Energy Requirement

Figure 16, shows the energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2) variation on the CO2 lean loading (mole CO2/mole amine) for 26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA and for 51 wt% New solvent. The results indicate that the reboiler heat duty is inverse to the lean CO2 loading. For instance the energy requirement reduces from 3.43 to 3.08 MJ/kg CO2 for AMP+HMDA as lean loading increases from 0.055 to 0.16 mole CO2 / mole amine. A similar effect was noticed for the New Solvent as its energy requirement reduces from 4.23 to 2.55 MJ/kg CO2 as its lean loading increases from 0.006 to 0.19 mole CO2/mole amine, illustrating that the reduction in solvent regeneration efficiency at lower energy input. Figure 16 also shows that energy requirement indicate a nonlinear correlation with the lean loading obtained.

15 E / O

- 0.05

89%CO2

198%CO2

A 88%CO2

100%C02I

A 99%C0.

A 99%C02

100%C0.

2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 4.5 Energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2)

Figure 16, Effect of energy requirement (MJ/kgC02) on C02 lean loading (mole C02/mole amine) for ▲ 26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA and ■ 51 wt% New Solvent at 10 vol% inlet C02 concentration, C02 recovery range approximate 89 to 99%.

It should be noticed that for the New Solvent the lean loading is more sensitive to the energy input at lean loading lower than 0.05 mole CO2/mole amine. Nevertheless, a significant additional heat is required to achieve a further reduction in lean loading below 0.05 mole CO2/mole amine. For AMP+HMDA the addition of more heat did not result in a noticeable reduction of the lean loading below 0.05. Hence,

regenerating the solvent to these low loading represents an unfavorable operating region that consumes excessive energy. For lean loadings above 0.05 mole CO2/mole amine the energy requirement is less sensitive to the change in lean loading, implicating that only a small amount of additional heat duty is required to achieve a substantial reduction in lean-CO2 loading, thus presenting a favorable operating condition. This effect is directly related to the vapor liquid equilibrium data.

JS 3.0 ©

O 2.5 U <u

>> > ©

I 89%CO,

ioo%co.

A 99%CO2

99%CO^A88%CO-,

ioo%co2

096%CO2

^88%CO "99%CO2

75 95 115

Reboiler duty (Watt)

Figure 17, Effect of reboiler duty (Watt) on CO2 recovery (mole CO2/kg solvent) for O 31 wt% MEA, ▲ 26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA and ■ 51 wt% New Solvent at 10 vol% inlet CO2 concentration, CO2 recovery range approximate 89 to 99%.

The operating CO2 partial pressure at the reboiler is limited to an extremely low equilibrium CO2 partial pressure for a very lean solution. The operating CO2 partial pressure cannot be easily reduced further to achieve an even slight reduction in lean CO2 loading without a penalty of excessive energy input, required to generate the required considerable increase in the amount of water vapor leaving the regeneration column. Comparing the solvent energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2) with CO2 recovery shows that New Solvent can reach much higher CO2 recovery (mole CO2/kg solvent) when compared to AMP+HMDA and MEA (see Figure 17).

86 88 90 92 94 96 CO2 recovery (%)

Figure 18, Effect of CO2 recovery (%) on energy requirement (MJ/kgCO2) for • 31 wt% MEA, A 26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA and ■ 51 wt% New Solvent at 10 vol% inlet CO2 concentration, CO2 recovery range approximate 89 to 99%.

Figure 18, shows the effect of CO2 recovery (%) on energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2). It should be noticed that the New Solvent can recover more CO2 (mole CO2/kg solvent) when compared to AMP+HMDA and MEA at much lower energy input. It is interesting to notice that for New solvent the energy requirement is only slightly increased 2.26 to 2.38 (MJ/kg CO2) for CO2 recovery from 89 to 99 %. Further increase in CO2 recovery from 98% to 100% increases the energy requirement up to 3.03 (MJ/kg CO2). Similar behavior can be noticed for AMP+HMDA where the energy requirement is only slightly increased from 3.08 to 3.43 (MJ/kg CO2) for CO2 recovery increase from 88 to 99 %. Further increase in energy requirement does not affect much on CO2 recovery for AMP+HMDA. It is clear from the test results that both solvents are more energy efficient when compared to MEA and are suitable for recovery levels as high as 99%.

3.6. Solvent Evaluation

A further evaluation of the solvents performance at both CO2 inlet concentration 5 and 10 vol% was done by measuring the required solvent circulation rate for a fixed CO2 removal fraction of 99% recovery. It should be noticed that the values presented in this evaluation are based on those tests which achieved the lowest energy requirement for 99% CO2 recovery from the absorber. Figures 19 (a & b) show the resulting solvent circulation rate (kg/h) and cyclic loading (mole CO2/mole amine) for the (26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA) solvent and the 51 wt% New Solvent and, for comparison, the 31 wt% MEA solvent at 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration respectively. Figure 19 (a) illustrates clearly that the 51 wt% New Solvent can achieve much higher cyclic loadings of 0.7 mole CO2/mole amine at lowest solvent circulation rate 0.5 kg/h.

.S 0.9 S

§ 0.6 v

s 0.5 S

0.4 0.3

.a 0.2 g 0.1

New Solvent

AMP+HMDA

0.50 0.60 0.89 Solvent flow rate (kg/h)

s ■is

1.0 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0.0

New Solvent

0.55 0.70 0.94 Solvent flow rate (kg/h)

Figure 19 (a), 5 vol% inlet CO2 conc. Figure 19 (b), 10 vol% inlet CO2 conc.

Effect of solvent flow rate (kg/h) on cyclic loading (mole CO2/mole amine) for 31 wt% MEA, 26.74

wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA and 51 wt% New Solvent at 99% CO2 recovery.

u •m

New Solvent

AMP+HMDA

0.50 0.60 0.89 Solvent flow rate (kg/h)

^ > ©

3.0 2.5 2.0 1.5 1.0 0.5 0.0

New Solvent

AMP+HMDA

0.55 0.70 0.94 Solvent flow rate (kg/h)

Figure 20 (a), 5 vol% inlet CO2 conc. Figure 20 (b), 10 vol% inlet CO2 conc.

Effect of solvent flow rate (kg/h) on CO2 recovery (mole CO2/kg solvent) for 31 wt% MEA, 26.74 wt%

AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA and 51 wt% New Solvent at 99% CO2 recovery.

From Figure 19(b) it can be noticed that the increase in CO2 inlet concentration to 10 vol% increases the required cyclic loading for the New Solvent up to 0.84 mole CO2/mole amine with an optimum solvent flow rate of 0.55 kg/h. For AMP+HMDA at 5 vol% CO2 inlet concentration a higher cyclic loading of 0.44 mole CO2/mole amine was found when compared to that of ME A. Which can be explained by the lower solvent circulation rate (0.6 kg/h) of AMP+HMDA was found in comparison with MEA, see Figure 19(a). At 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration an optimum solvent circulation rate of 0.70 kg/h was found for AMP+HMDA. Taking into account that the cyclic loadings are almost identical, this is in line with the increased total CO2 recovery task (in mole/h) when comparing the 5 vol% CO2, 645 nL/h with the 10 vol% 400 nL/h conditions. For the New Solvent, however, the cyclic loading increased significantly, when going from the 5 to 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration, Therefore, only a small increase in the required solvent circulation rate (from 0.50 to 0.55 kg/h) was observed.

O 5.0 U

Ü 1.0 w

AMP+HMDA

0.50 0.60 0.89 Solvent flow rate (kg/h)

0.55 0.70 0.94 Solvent flow rate (kg/h)

Figure 21 (a), 5 vol% inlet CO2 conc. Figure 21 (b), 10 vol% inlet CO2 conc.

Effect of solvent flow rate (kg/h) on energy requirement (MJ/kg CO2) for 31 wt% MEA, 26.74 wt% AMP

+ 11.91 wt% HMDA and 51 wt% New Solvent at 99% CO2 recovery.

Figures 20 (a & b) show that the New Solvent obtains the highest CO2 recovery 2.6 and 2.95 mole CO2/ kg solvent for 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration. For AMP+HMDA solvent CO2 recovery of 2.19 and 2.32 mole CO2/ kg solvent was achieved at 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration respectively. New solvent and AMP+HMDA were found to have less energy requirement (MJ/Kg solvent) compared to MEA, as can be seen from Figure 21 (a & b). It is interesting to notice that New solvent energy requirement was found to be same of 3.09 and 3.03 MJ/Kg solvent at 5 and 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration respectively. Whereas, AMP+HMDA energy requirement was increased from 4.07 to 4.41 MJ/Kg solvent for 5 to 10 vol% CO2 inlet concentration respectively. This could be due to the higher lean

loading for AMP+HMDA at 5 vol% CO2 inlet concentration case. These results already suggest that the benefit of the use of New Solvent as absorption liquid could be substantial.

Table 9, Comparison of solvents energy requirement at 90% (± 3 %) CO2 recovery.

S0lvent inlet Flue gas Solvent CO2 Cyclic Energy

Conc. flow rate flow rate recovery loading requirement

vol% nL/h kg/h % /mo,le C°2 MJ/kg CO2

/mole amine

MEA 31 wt%n 5 645 0.90 91 0.29 4.80

AMP 30 wt% + Pz 5 wt%(>) 5 645 0.63 90 0.51 3.87

New Solvent 51 wt% 5 645 0.48 93 0.84 2.48

AMP 26.7 wt% + HMDA 11.9 wt% 5 645 0.63 91 0.44 3.62

MEA 31 wt%n 10 400 0.91 89 0.34 4.33

AMP 35.6 wt%(>) 10 400 1.07 90 0.37 3.91

New Solvent 51 wt% 10 400 0.57 89 0.80 2.26

AMP 26.7 wt% + HMDA 11.9 wt% 10 400 0.73 88 0.46 3.41

(*) In-house data Shell Technology Centre, Amsterdam.

Table 9, shows the comparison of the energy requirement for the AMP+HMDA - solvent and the New Solvent with the more conventional solvents as 31 wt% MEA and 30 wt% AMP + 5 wt% Pz for the gas streams containing 5 vol% inlet CO2 concentration and at 90% (±3%) CO2 recovery. For 10 vol% inlet CO2 concentration and at 90% (±3%) CO2 recovery 31 wt% MEA and 35.6 wt% AMP was chosen for comparison with New Solvent and AMP+HMDA - solvent. The New Solvent clearly shows that it requires the lowest energy requirement for both CO2 inlet concentrations, reducing the energy requirement (according to the experimental results above) with almost 50% in comparison with the 31 wt% MEA solvent. Also the value obtained for the energy requirement for the New Solvent is not much different for both CO2 inlet concentrations and not very sensitive to the CO2 recovery fraction (see Figure 18) in the range up to 99%. Furthermore, it is interesting to notice that the energy requirement for the 26.74 wt% AMP + 11.91 wt% HMDA solvent is comparable (and even slightly lower) with the same of 30 wt% AMP + 5 wt% Pz solvent at 5 vol% inlet CO2 concentration.

4. Conclusions

The absorption equilibrium data of CO2 in aqueous solution of 0.5, 1 and 2.5 mole/L 1,6 Hexamethylenediamine (HMDA) were measured at 20, 30 and 40°C for pressures in the range of 1 to 100 kPa. Also the absorption equilibrium data of CO2 in aqueous blend of AMP + HMDA at 40°C was measured for 1 to 100 kPa. The equilibrium partial pressure of CO2 is considerably lower than for

aqueous MEA, compared at the same temperature and same amine-group concentration and amine-group loading. Vapor liquid equilibrium results shows that HMDA has potential to be used as an activator for CO2 absorption and AMP+HMDA blend shows comparable results to that for AMP+PZ.

In this study two new promising amine based solvent systems were successfully tested in a continuously operated pilot plant in order to prove the operability of the solvent system and to obtain information on the required solvent flow rates and energy requirements for regeneration of the solvent. It has been shown that the solvent formulations studied, which were identified as 'promising' during earlier solvent screening, indeed have the potential to reduce the reboiler energy requirements by 20-50% in comparison with a 31 wt% MEA solution as reference solvent. Since, additionally, corrosiveness and evaporative losses compare favorably, these solvents may form attractive alternatives to existing absorption systems.

Acknowledgements

This research is part of the CATO programme, the Dutch national research programme on CO2 Capture and Storage. CATO is financially supported by the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs (EZ) and the consortium partners (www.co2-cato.nl).

The authors wish to thank to Nick Aldenkamp, Henkjan Moed and Benno Knaken from the University of Twente for the experimental work and technical support in the VLE experiments and Bas Armin Schneider for the excellent work in the pilot plant experiments. Special thanks to Frank Geuzebroek and Xiahoui Zhang of the GSGT group at Shell Technology Centre Amsterdam for the help and support.

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